Recent days the main topics are about the value paper magazines and how digital media have effected the industry. These are not just inside the industry issues, but how general media have drastically changed in past couple of years.

Just few articles ago we talked about the journey of W Magazine at Conde Nast and how Stefano sees the future of the magazine. 

I have collected Vogue magazines globally for over 20 years and every magazine I ever bought felt like a treasure of visual art created by selected professionals. Because that one campaign or editorial could only be seen between these pages and it had such a high value.

Nowdays digital media have gave access to showcase art to everyone and that have lead us to quantity over quality in all shapes and forms. Not just talking about social media being over flooded with visual content, but also iconic fashion magazine being forced to create more and more content what leads them losing quality what it used to have.

Since the dawn of the internet, people have heralded the death of print media. It’s true that news has gone primarily online; most major media companies have made business model shifts in recent years to accommodate consumer preference for digital content. But where does this leave companies that have relied heavily on newspaper, billboard, magazine and direct mail ads?

Although print advertising may not be completely defunct yet, its future hangs in the balance. Marketers still dedicating resources to print in 2018 will need to consider whether it’s worth continuing in the current digital landscape.

High fashion Twitter have been highly vocal about these issues past month and I have to agree with them. Lets see some outtakes.

 

I completely understand magazines from business point of view, because if they will only produce that same type of high quality art what they used to they will die out. Ads in Vogue first pages are not bringing the same coins in what it used to and magazines are forced to lower their standards to get the numbers they need. Anna Wintour was very stubborn for years and years for not putting reality Tv stars on then cover, but industry had changed so much that even she didn’t have a voice than to cater for what this new generation is asking for.

Me as a old generation Vogue junkie know Vogue as everything Franca Sozzani created and represented. Vogue was a political/cultural world of art where message was sent via fashion. Nowadays its just products, products, products…

Lucinda Chambers, the long-serving fashion director ousted in favour of Enninful appointee Venetia Scott, vented her frustrations in a little-known industry publication – and it went viral.

It was the sometimes scathing and often cynical comments Chambers made about the fragrant world of glossy magazines that caused a public furore, and it spread faster on social media than a Kardashian wardrobe malfunction.

“The June cover with Alexa Chung in a stupid Michael Kors T-shirt is crap,” Chambers remarked of a Vogue shoot she’d done under commercial constraints. “He’s a big advertiser so I knew why I had to do it. Truth be told, I haven’t read Vogue in years … The clothes are just irrelevant for most people – so ridiculously expensive.”

While many in the industry are terrified to speak out, fearful of biting the bejewelled hand that feeds, she spoke candidly to Anja Aronowsky Cronberg, the founder and editor of Vestoj, a niche magazine that aims to “bring together academia and industry in a bid to combine academic theory, critical thinking and a bit of good old-fashioned glamour”.

 

Catwalk shows used to be held twice a year for a closed shop of editors and buyers, who would reveal their carefully considered vision of trends to readers and customers a few months down the line. Now runway shows are live-streamed and consumers can order the clothes as soon as they have appeared.

Thus, the glossy magazine doesn’t have the power it once did. While Vogue transports the reader to a fantasy world of high fashion – in much the same way watching a film offers an escape from the everyday – and is still seen by many as the bastion of high-end style, the magazine’s influence has nevertheless been diluted.

“Magazines aren’t going to disappear,” says Bronwyn Cosgrave, former features editor at British Vogue. “People still like to have something tangible to browse – the book industry was predicted to collapse in the wake of the Kindle, but it has rebounded. I think magazine publishers simply have to work harder for attention in a competitive market. They need to diversify and become omni-platform businesses – Alex Shulman successfully launched the Vogue festival, which is a massive revenue stream for them now.”

But financially this doesn’t always work. Less than a year after Condé Nast relaunched Style.com as an e-commerce site, it closed. So, diversification isn’t always the way to go, and there’s still the dilemma of the future of the print publication and how it meets the needs of modern readers. “I don’t think news reporting is the way to go for print publications, that’s why I’ve shaped Vestoj to be more about reflection and analysis than the latest anything,” Anja Aronowsky Cronberg explains. “Reading longform writing on paper is still my preferred method. Photographs also tend to look much more enticing on a page than on a screen. One of my big bugbears when it comes to fashion publishing is how homogenous most magazines are. I’d love to see more diversity in how fashion is dealt with.”

Ultimately, the fashion industry is a commercial behemoth with the remit of selling clothes – and lucrative, profit-heavy accessories, fragrance and cosmetics with the attached kudos of each coveted brand. Prior to the digital revolution, designers and fashion businesses were heavily dependent on the magazine industry to help them reach customers and endorse their collections.

“The one thing that has changed dramatically in recent years is the direct relationship brands now have with their consumers,” says Imran Amed, founder and editor in chief of the Business of Fashion, an independent publication that has become to industry insiders what the Financial Times is to the City.

“In this new hierarchy, the consumer has the ability to amplify or negatively impact on business, through sharing positive or negative responses. Once brands and magazines dictated what we should buy, now consumers are telling us what they like and want, and the power structure has been turned on its head.

“We are at a time of disruption in the wider world, and all businesses, in fashion and beyond, are testing new models to see what works and keeps them relevant to their audience.”

 

 

 

Luxury consumers will still value tangible ad platforms.

Glossy magazines and major publications hold a certain cachet that online doesn’t achieve. There is literal weight to your presence. This tangible platform resonates well with luxury consumers and clients — the trick is to find a complementary balance between digital and print within any given campaign for a multidimensional approach. – Ashley Murphy, Stribling & Associates

 

Offline entities and influencers will reengage consumers with print media.

Print media is in a state of evolution as it finds new ways to reengage consumers through partnerships with offline entities. As this evolution occurs, it will hopefully lead to higher readerships. Unfortunately, if you only have one dollar to spend on marketing and need to decide between print and digital, digital will always win. The reach is far greater with digital advertising. – Sherry Jhawar, Blended Strategy Group

 

Paper will become cost prohibitive, killing the last print campaigns.

Eventually, the entire population will have been born and raised with the internet available to them. Newspapers and magazines will only be found in museums. The last bastion of print ads will be direct mail, as a physical mailbox will be the last place that print can reach that digital can’t. Eventually, that will die as well when all bills are paid online and the cost of paper becomes cost prohibitive. – Stephan Baldwin, franchisegator.com

 

 

 

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